Taking a Knee …

Sports Injuries Force Athletes to Sidelines, Benches

Freshman Whitt Ward expresses his disappointment about being out of sports for six or more weeks. Several male and female Groom athletes are enduring missing part of their playing seasons this year.

Charity Perry

Freshman Whitt Ward expresses his disappointment about being out of sports for six or more weeks. Several male and female Groom athletes are enduring missing part of their playing seasons this year. "It makes me feel bad," Ward said.

It was first and 15. The Tigers were working on stopping the Valley Patriots from scoring. The play starts and ends in a blink of an eye. As soon as the whistle blows, everyone takes a knee. Mothers and fathers frantically look around, hoping it’s not their child. Sheridan and Robby Brooks see it’s their son, No. 30, Whitt Ward.

Injuries have consumed many students’ lives at Groom high school. Some keep students out for as long as four months or as little as six weeks. The injuries range from concussions, torn muscles and fractures.

According to Sports Injury Statistics, in the United States, about 30 million children and teens participate in some form of organized sports, and more than 3.5 million suffer injuries each year.

Ward fractured his fibula in the football game against the Valley Patriots on Oct. 28. He will be unable to play for six to eight weeks.

Ward said it makes him feel “bad.”

Along with Ward, seven other high school students were, or are, out with injuries that occurred during sports. Freshman Ginna Miller, sophomore Halle Barkley, junior Helena Y’Barra, senior Garet Rocha, senior Cody Kling, senior Carson Ritter and senior Leslie Germany also were injured this year.

Ritter fractured his posterior process talus while playing a football game against White Deer on Sept. 16. He will require surgery after the season to assure his recovery. Y’Barra pulled discs out of place in her spine last year, and that same injury has caused her discomfort this season. The junior plans to return within a minimum of six weeks.

Miller has also faced a battle with a sports injury. Miller was out for a week after going through required concussion protocol. Along with Miller, Kling underwent concussion protocol after a football incident against Ft. Elliot on Sept. 9.

Rocha was out a total of four weeks with a sprained medial collateral ligament, mcl, and a possible tear in the meniscus. Like many of the male injuries, Rocha received his wound during a football game on the Groom field.

“I was a little sad to sit out, but it feels good to get back out there,” Rocha said.

Similar to Rocha, Germany suffered a tear in her right meniscus. She underwent surgery to repair it on Oct. 20  and should be released to play in six weeks.

“I hate it, I hate that I won’t be able to play for half of my senior year. But I’m glad that I can still cheer on my teammates,” Germany said. “I’ll just be happy to be on the court with my team again.”